THE grieving family of a tragic Scottish teen who took his life after being blackmailed by cybercriminals are raising money to mark three years since his death.
Daniel Perry from Dunfermline, Fife, jumped off the Forth Road Bridge in 2013 after falling prey to an online scam where he believed he was chatting to an American girl his same age.
A recording of their Skype chat was used by a group of scammers to blackmail the 17-year-old who threatened to share the footage if he didn’t pay up.
The threats proved too much for the popular mechanic who took to the bridge that same evening and never returned home.
Inquiries by Police Scotland revealed an electronic online trail, which led to the Philippines and links to organised crime groups there.
Last month a number of men were arrested in the Philippines but investigations are still ongoing into whether they were involved in Daniel’s death.
Almost three years since his death, his family are raising money for the Royal National Lifeboat Institute (RNLI) who helped recover Daniel’s body.
Daniel’s gran, Ruby Ramsay from Rosyth revealed family and friends will take part in a sponsored walk along the bridge to mark three years since his death.
She said: “Every time we do things to raise money for the RNLI, last year we raised £5,000 and hopefully we can raise a bit more.
“It gives us something to focus on and will be a final thank you to all the amazing members of the RNLI for their outstanding efforts.
“Daniel would have been 21 in October and we’re all hurting. He’s such a miss and I remember that when he left my house that night, he banged the door, which was something he never did.
“There was no indication that anything was wrong but, after he left my house at7.15pm, I got a text from him at 7.45pm to say that he’d ‘be home soon’. I didn’t know that he’s started walking across the bridge, that’s how quick it was.”
His family have set up a fundraising page in a bid to make something positive come from Daniel’s death.
Ruby added: “His school pals still put up messages about him and this is a way of making sure his memory is secure.
“Because of his stature, we used to call him the ‘wee man’ and he was a brilliant laddie, very obliging and loving, and nothing was too much bother to him.
“The money goes direct to the RNLI to buy new equipment and, until this, I thought that they were funded. This way we can do something and some good can come of it.”
In 2013 Daniel’s uncle, Ron Reilly revealed how he went to Daniel’s bedroom on the night of his death and found his laptop showcasing the sickening scam that led to his death.
The sick scammers apparently told the teen he “would be dead” if he didn’t give in to their demands.
At the time Mr Reilly, who runs a garage in Edinburgh, said: “We found his laptop, it was still on and the last page he was on was open.
“I saw a picture of a girl who looked 16 or 17 and she was very pretty.
“They had been typing and swapping pictures with each other.
“Their relationship, if you can call it that, was more chatroom orientated, they were writing to each other a lot.
“It was a financial scam, the girl wasn’t real, then they have demanded money from him.”
In 2014 Daniel’s mother, Nicola Perry said: “The manner of Daniel’s death is every parent’s nightmare.
“If we are to make sure that no other parent or family member loses a loved one in the way we lost Daniel then people must take care when talking to others online and not share intimate pictures or personal information that could be used against them.”
More information can be found at https://www.justgiving.com/